Posts Categorized: Pre-Departure

Arriving à Paris!!

I never saw myself as someone who would get culture shock, even though I had only left the country once in my life – and I was 10 years old so it didn’t really count. Students have been studying abroad since forever, and if they could do it there was no reason I wouldn’t be… Read more »

Expect the Unexpected

Everything works out. Everything that can go wrong, will go wrong. The two statements above are less contradictory than you may think. I am writing from week one of my exchange, and my advice to incoming students is to take pre-departure preparations seriously. The following is a list of things that went wrong my first… Read more »

Pre-departure post

The place I call home has changed so frequently and dynamically throughout my life that even now, I have difficulty choosing an answer. I was born in Korea, raised in Canada, Japan, Indonesia — yet I sit writing this pre-departure post in Evanston, IL. The choice to study abroad in Singapore was just as natural… Read more »

Pre-Departure: Les Plans

I’m writing this post while on the Intercampus shuttle home after my last full day of work this summer. In my backpack are a few books, assorted pens (taken from my work desk, of course), and four printed maps of Paris’ public transit system. I’d love to be able to tune out and read, but,… Read more »

The realities of registration

Just seeing orange and blue – the National University of Singapore’s (NUS) school colors – brings me some anxiety. Don’t get me wrong, deep down I’m very excited to go. I’ve been dreaming of studying abroad in Singapore since the fall of my freshman year at Northwestern. But after scouring through orange and blue PDFs… Read more »

Surviving International Fees

Money. By far it is one of the most stressful things to think about when it comes to living in a foreign country. What is going to be the easiest, and cheapest, way to pay for food, housing, pubs, tours, events? Foreign transaction fees, currency conversion fees, and ATM fees…they’re all horrible. Oftentimes they can end… Read more »

International FOMO

In these days before I depart for Hong Kong, abandoning the familiar saddens me a bit. Travelling inherently holds this trap: leaving a home, family and friends behind, knowing there will be a senior-year NU football season that I won’t see, and missing the slow but steady transition from sunny days to the blistering but… Read more »

A New Adventure

After months of packing and bumbling excitement, I’m finally 19 hours away from landing in the beautiful country of Singapore. Next to me, my mom sits with her Fodor’s Travel Guidebook for the 25 best places to visit in Singapore, amongst them the Singapore Botanic Gardens, Marina Bay Sands and the little islands around Singapore… Read more »

8,434 Miles from Home

  Well, this is it. After so many weeks of going to travel doctors, submitting forms, applying for housing, buying new clothes suitable for hot weather, and booking flights, I’m finally ready to leave for Singapore, my new home for the next 4 months. It still seems completely surreal that I’ll be experiencing such a… Read more »

Small country, big changes

Anytime I tell someone that I’m studying abroad in Singapore, I get the usual comments about how one cannot chew gum or spit without a hefty fine, or some even claim that there are jail sentences for such a seemingly minuscule act. When I think of Singapore, I too hold these stereotypes, and I’m excited… Read more »